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My Made In America

My Made In America


This past week my family and I embarked on a new journey. One that has always been something near and dear to my heart.

Buying only American made products.

You think...that in reality, everything must be made in China right?

Well. Theoretically.

But not reality.

My reality has been so much different than I expected.

A lot of it stems from my childhood, my parents and how I was raised.

My dad was a Green Beret in the Vietnam war. He was an 82nd Airborne Paratrooper. The stories I have heard about the Army's Elite and how they were trained to fight for our country makes me quiver. I know there is no way on God's green Earth that I could do what he did.

But you see. Even though my dad served our country with dignity and honor. He didn't have a choice. He was drafted. And dropping everything to go off to war was his way of life. He knew no other.

My mom tells me stories about when the troops returned home after putting their lives on the line.... protestors did the unthinkable in my eyes.

My dad got SPIT ON. Spit on by hatefilled people protesting the war. What the? Who does that???

My dad sat through horrific experiences because he HAD TO so that these hippy punks could lay around-smoke pot-and THINK they speak philosophically. I gotta tell ya. If I was more than a 'twinkle' in my parents eyes and was THERE as my dad got SPIT on by these a$$holes? I'd have probably been arrested.

My father had to carry on with grace and dignity and he inturn carried his American pride to his children.

I will take to my grave the many memories of him every Christmas getting socks, peanuts and work shirts. But you better believe it the first things out of his mouth was "Are these American made?".

It was instilled in my sisters and I hearts the importance of giving back to this country for our freedoms.

Here we are... how many years later and we are so living in this matrix world where life is so busy that we jump from smartphone to laptop to iPads, Kindles...you name it. We get so caught up in our own fast paced lives that so many of us Americans 'forget' how we afforded that Lexus or Louis Handbag. We forget of the Veterans living under bridges because they can't survive the PTSD. We forget the single mom who worked in a factory for 25 years to support her children who is now struggling to put food on the table because her job moved to Mexico.

Middle America is so often forgotten. I know. Cause I am one at heart. I now live on the East Coast...and I see the rat race. Heck, I'd be lying if I said I didn't jump in the matrix and live it at times.

This week, I've been doing little video vignettes of my findings for my family: Made in America.

It's been an eye opener. An experience I'll never forget.

Monday morning, July 2nd at 9a ET I am a GUEST on the Kathie Lee and Hoda show talking about my experience.

I'm beyond excited about this opportunity. I mean, who wouldn't be? But it has been an awakening for me.

It's brought me back to some of the deeply planted roots that my family taught me.

Roots that needed watering.

So what if I didn't buy that sweater. Or get my kid bananas. So what if we kind of 'had to do without'.

I challenge you, as an American...to see things the way they really are. Before you buy that Made in China whatever...before you purchase that whatever it is... think about it. Is it worth it? Is there one you can find made in America? Research shows if we spend $5 towards American made a month, our country would have nearly 200,000 more jobs! That job could be your moms. Your brothers. Your cousins.

Your fathers.

Tomorrow at the break of dawn, I'm wrapping up my Vignette series for the Today Show by SEEING our country in an American Made experience. I'm going up in a hot air balloon (again) with the US Hot Air Balloon Team..in a basket & balloon made in Michigan. And when I'm up there? I can assure you I'll look at this country with a twinkling in my eye...knowing what I know now.

IVillage Beach Ready Community Challenge

IVillage Beach Ready
Community Challenge

 

Oh yes my dear friends. 

I know. It's FRIGHTENING.  It's that time of the season.  I Bob Harper; iVilage Butt Buster!cringe but I also smile.  A total LOVE-HATE my life moment knowing that.......

GULP.

I have to put on a bathing suit?  Where are the days in which you freakin' wore those fullbodied funky suits that covered your ENTIRE body?!?!?!  Beuhler????

Ok.  So I could either wear a full bodied wet suit or I could at least make the healthier effort and do something towards getting there.

Ugh.  I have to put on a bathing suit this week and I might have a heart attack or be mistaken as a beached whale at Disney.  

Ok.  Enough of that wallowing self pity that I always put myself through.

I joined.  I'm in.  

I'M TAKING THE IVILLAGE BEACH READY COMMUNITY CHALLENGE!

I'm an iVoice for iVillage so why NOT support them and their awesomeness. 

I mean....ahem....BOB HARPER is my trainer. Really?  Who wouldn't want to train with the longest standing awesomeness of a trainer for the Biggest Loser on NBC?  

So here is what you can do to join me.... cause you KNOW you wanna.  =)

Go to the iVillage Beach Ready Page - register...and GET OFF THE COUCH!  

iVillage iVoice: When I Became My Mother

OMGOSH.  I PROBABLY HAVE NEVER LAUGHED THIS HARD IN MY LIFE.

Reason #2,341 why I LOVE being a mom.

And before you watch the video-MOM...I LOVE YOU. haha  You have amazing LEGGS, mom.  As your 3 daughters have thunder thighs from hell...ahem.  You do have amazing characteristics.  WHY we didn't get that?!?!?!  Grrrr.

This one though?  GULP.

When You Realized you WERE Your Mother:

 

 

iVoices With iVillage Infertility and Me

This past week while at a conference I opened up about my struggles with not getting pregnant.

I hear it all the time 'Be happy with what you got!' 'If you're struggling with your marriage, pregnancy doesn't solve it!'

Really?  My marriage is better than many.  Especially after the tumultuous early years of it.  Everyone struggles at times.

And for me, fighting the thoughts in my head isn't about 'I want to have another baby' or 'I'm not happy with what I got...'

It's - oh crap - what if there is something really wrong with me?!?!?!?

Boston was a one time deal.  Not an 'oops'...but more of an 'OH! That was easy!'

And for about a year now....it's not that we're 'trying'...but it's not that we aren't either. 

And for any woman.  It messes with your head.  Heck. Even when I JOKED about it, I got a little backlash.

And with all the other things going on in my life right now?  I just want to know 'what's wrong with me.'

It may be stress.  Hormones.  I may be done having kids.  Or it may be God's plan.  Could be the C-section caused the issues...And it could very well not even be me.  It could be him.

But either way....I want to know.  I deserve to know.  

I also know one things for sure.... 

I'm not alone.  

And if you are struggling with even having your first.  Or 2nd.  Know that you are not alone.

There is hope.  Support.  And love out there for you.

Tomorrow I hit up Main Line Fertility Clinic.  And even though there is a chance that my husband can't be there with me for the appointment....I know and have to remind myself in my heart...

I am not alone.

xoxoxo - Joey

iVoices With iVillage A Child with Cancer

iVoices With iVillage

A Child with Cancer

There are some seriously amazing segments done from my iVoices friends with iVillage.

But this one....REALLY, REALLY really touched my heart.

Celena Gill, from Strictly Fab shared her encounter with 46Mommas.

What a way to look at life.  It's SO short.  

Embrace it.

Thanks Celena for sharing...

xoxoxo - Joey